Hong Kong 2003
Go to
Traditional Chinese Simplified Chinese
Commerce and Industry
Home   Print this Page


Strong economic ties with the Mainland, especially with the Pearl River Delta (PRD), now form one of Hong Kong's fundamental strengths. The branching out of production processes to the Mainland in the last two decades has triggered a remarkable transformation in the economy of both Hong Kong and the PRD and brought about the development of Hong Kong into an international financial centre and services hub. The Mainland is Hong Kong's largest trading partner, accounting for 43 per cent of its total trade in 2003. Hong Kong accounted for nearly half of the Mainland's foreign direct investment as at the end of June 2003. Of the 3 200 regional headquarters and offices established in Hong Kong in mid-year, more than 80 per cent are responsible for overseeing their Mainland businesses.

HONG KONG is a leading international trading and services hub as well as a high value-added manufacturing base. It is widely recognised as one of the freest economies in the world, and the gateway to the Mainland market.

In 2003, Hong Kong's total merchandise trade amounted to $3,548.2 billion. Over 288 000 business establishments in a wide range of services and manufacturing sectors are operating in Hong Kong, and the vast majority are small and medium enterprises (SMEs). There is also a strong presence of international businesses in Hong Kong. At the end of 2002, Hong Kong had about 9 000 enterprise groups with inward direct investment.

Hong Kong's continuing economic success owes much to a simple tax structure and low tax rates, a versatile and industrious workforce, an excellent infrastructure, free flow of capital and information, the rule of law, and the Government's firm commitment to free trade and free enterprise.

The Government sees its task as facilitating commerce and industry within the framework of a free market. It maintains no tariffs and no regulatory measures impinging on international trade other than those required to discharge its international obligations or to protect health, the environment and access to high technology. The HKSAR also practises an open and liberal investment policy and actively encourages inward investment.

The Government's industrial policy aims to promote industrial development by creating a business-friendly environment and providing adequate support services. The Government zones land for general and specialised industrial use. It also maintains and develops advanced education and training facilities, ensures a modern legislative and regulatory environment, and supports industry in enhancing productivity and quality through technology and management improvement. The Government, however, does not subsidise any specific industries.

With the weight of the Hong Kong economy shifting towards knowledge-based and higher value-added activities, the Government puts increasing emphasis on promoting innovation and technological improvement in industry and business. It aims to strengthen support for technology development and application, develop a critical mass of fine scientists and engineers, skilled technicians and venture capitalists, and encourage the development of a significant cluster of technology-based businesses.

Yearbook archives: 2002 | 2001 | 2000 | 1999 | 1998 | 1997
back to top
back to top